Johannesburg – A Mpumalanga man accused of fraudulently issuing certificates to illegal immigrants was arrested and also charged with trying to bribe a Home Affairs official investigating him.
A sting operation by the Hawks led to Muntu Edwell Monareng caught red-handed after giving his colleague R13 000 in the hope he would stop investigating him.
Spokesperson for the Hawk Captain Dineo Sekgotodi said Monareng was arrested in collaboration with the Department of Home Affairs , Kwa-Zulu Natal Crime Intelligence, Middelburg Counter Narcotics and Crime Intelligence Technical Support Unit.
Monareng works at the Home Affairs office in Witbank.
Sekgotodi said the Home Affairs allegedly noticed irregularities on the issuing of birth certificates to foreign nationals during an internal inspection in January this year.
Sekgotodi said an internal investigation was instituted and the suspect promised the Home Affairs investigator money in order to discontinue the investigation against him.
“The matter was reported to the Serious Corruption Investigation for further investigation. A multi-disciplinary operation was conducted and the suspect was arrested immediately after handing over R13 000 gratification to the Home Affairs investigator,” she said.
Sekgotodi said they also found the man had R17 000 on him and found ID books of other people he was assisting.
All those, he said, the Hawks have seized.
“It seems like this is not the first time (he’s) doing this,” Sekgotodi said.
The Star contacted three Home Affairs spokespeople to get more on the certificates Monareng is alleged to have illegally issued. However, none of them were available for comment.
Monareng appeared at the eMalahleni Magistrate’s Court on Thursday charged with corruption.
He was released on a R3 000 bail and is expected back in court on October 9.